Gottschalk (2)

Gottschalk ruler of the Wends and martyr, was educated in the monastery of St. Michael at Liineburg, but left the monastery, and abandoned Christianity all together, as soon as he heard that his father Uto, ruler of the Wends, was killed by a Saxon, about the year 1029. To revenge the death of his father, Gottschalk stirred up his countrymen to a frightful war against the Saxons. Gottschalk' was defeated by Bernhard, duke of Saxony, and taken prisoner.' He returned to Christianity, and after his release from prison, went to the court of Canute the Great, spent ten years in Denmark and England, and after his return to Wendland in 1043 he united Holstein, Mecklenburg, Pomerania, and the Brandenburg marches into one powerful Wendish empire. He now became one of the most zealous missionaries in his country, translated the liturgical formulas and sermons of German missionaries into the vernacular; he built schools, churches, monasteries, and preached to his people. In spite of all his efforts, there lingered yet among his countrymen a heathenish fanaticism which found vent in an insurrection, that broke out in 1066, and in which Gottschalk was murdered on June 7. See Adain of Bremen, Gesta Pontif. Hammab. 3; Helmold, Chron. Slav. 1:20; Giesebrecht, Geschichte der deutschen Kaiserzeit, 2:460 sq.; 3:130 sq.; Hirsch, in Piper's Kalender, 1856; Dehig, Geschichte des Erzbisthums Hamburg-Bremen (1877), 1:183 sq.; Wagenmann, in Plitt-Herzog Real-Encyclop. s.v. (B.P.)

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